Articles / Adapting to Life in England: ...

Feb. 9, 2016

Adapting to Life in England: Interning at BAO


Hej! To give a brief introduction, my name is Rikke and I am a Graphic Design Intern at By Association Only. Don’t be freaked out by my name. I am Danish, and it is not my fault. I had to get a new English name though, it’s now Ree, nobody has a clue how to say my real name. Everyone also thought I was a boy, yeah, I am not!

So basically my boss asked me to do a blogpost, which of course I don’t mind, even though English is not my first language and it scares the shit out of me. So I’ll base it on things I know something about. To be precise, two things I have experienced first hand; Firstly, to get a perspective on how it is to be a viking in England and secondly to show the reality of going from university, to doing graphic design in a real, grown-up business. Don’t be scared of the word ‘’grown-up’’. I still wear slippers at work, and my bosses have no problem spitting out my Danish candy, like little babies, without even pretending to like it.

That’s the thing with English people. They are so polite at the beginning but as soon as you get the know them, they reveal their dark sarcastic souls. So if you want to make them do something, like eat your weird candy or not spit out your badly made tea, you have to do as soon as you meet them. And yes, seriously, they drink a lot of tea! It’s not just a prejudice – with sugar and milk in case you ever need to impress an Englishman.

“The most frightening thing about England is probably the fact that they drive on the left side of the road. It is terrifying!”

But if you survive the first couple of months you will be fine! Possibly. However the public transport will slowly kill you because it’s just awful. The busses show up whenever they want to. They’re kind of like cats… Never to be trusted. Public transport is probably the reason everyone has a pretty, new car… without overpriced air-conditioning! It’s okay to be jealous about a thing or two though I guess. Like cheaper cars, free ketchup at McDonald’s and especially the fact they have Primark.

One thing I need to learn to do, is to juggle. I am not talking about juggling assignments, but actually juggling. I don’t think it’s a English thing, maybe more a BAO-thing? I didn’t see that one coming when I left university. Juggling wasn’t my only surprise. In the real working-world, clients actually make the final decisions a lot of the time and they sometimes say ‘No’ to things. But the rumours about clients being horrible is luckily not anything I have experienced… yet. They might choose the logo that you like the least from the 10 that you’ve made, but the most important thing I’ve learnt is that the client is always right, so don’t show anything that you’re not happy to put your name on.

“I’ve worked on a range of cool projects for companies in industries I didn’t even know existed.”

I’ve rebranded and created print-collateral for an aquatic specialist, an alloy wheel repair company, created web design concepts for a multi-national coffee company, and even worked on logo’s for a cloud-based software company.

So, If you want to ‘kind of’ learn to juggle, eat scary danish candy or explain to me why ‘ways to skin a cat’ is a thing, I am at my very own corner at the BAO studio.


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